What a way to kick off the regular season of the NFL. People saw a magic show from Ryan Fitzpatrick, Deshaun Watson struggle, Nathan Peterman being Nathan Peterman, a 7 hour-plus game, and most importantly the Browns not losing.
There were surprising productive games from Austin Ekeler, Randall Cobb, James Conner, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Joe Flacco, DeSean Jackson, Kenny Stills, Adrian Peterson, and Phillip Lindsay will have people going to the Waiver Wire in a hurry. I’m here to tell you not to get fooled by some of those performances.
Some of the players I listed above are included in my Week 2 Start_Sit list. I don’t think they were fluke games, but I am having a hard time believing they’ll have repeat success this week.
Week 2 Start_Sit
Kansas City Chiefs vs Pittsburgh Steelers
Start: James Conner, RB, PIT
LeVeon Bell still hasn’t returned and as long as he is away, Conner will be a viable starter. The weather helped him as it was tough to pass, but he was great in the passing game for Pittsburgh. He caught five out of the six pass thrown his way for 57 yards. James Conner should have another productive game against this shaky Kansas City defense.
Sit: Sammy Watkins, WR, KC
The connection with his new QB, Patrick Mahomes, looked nonexistent. He fell behind Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill in targets. Watkins is going to be limited if he keeps falling behind Kelce and Hill in targets. Not to mention Kareem Hunt will be more involved in the passing game and that could push Sammy down to the fourth option.
Miami Dolphins vs New York Jets
Start: Quincy Enunwa, WR, NYJ
After sitting out all of last season with a neck injury, he had a great return on Monday night. It looked like he was Sam Darnold’s favorite receiver as he got 10 targets. He hauled in six of those 10 passes for 63 yards and scored a touchdown. The Dolphins’ secondary looked questionable and the Jets put on a clinic against the Lions, too. Enunwa is a solid WR3 option.
Sit: Frank Gore, RB, MIA
The ageless wonder and future Hall of Famer showed he has plenty of gas left in his tank. His nine carries were just five less than Kenyan Drake’s 14 carries. Gore was productive with his nine carries as he had a total of 61 rushing yards. Don’t let this distract you that he is still a backup and wasn’t used in the passing game. Just be careful and don’t get fooled by his Week 1 game.
Philadelphia Eagles vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Start: Jay Ajayi, RB, PHI
With two touchdowns, it is clear that Ajayi will be the red zone RB. It is problematic he only received three more snaps than Darren Sproles (Ajayi 36, Sproles 33). They will need to utilize the run more with the lack of receiving weapons and to take pressure off of Nick Foles. Ajayi was the best RB for Philadelphia and that should carry over against Tampa Bay.
Sit: Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, TB
There is a well known Public Enemy song called Don’t Believe The Hype and that is how I feel about Fitzpatrick in Week 2. This Eagles defense is next level. They didn’t allow the former MVP, Matt Ryan, to throw a touchdown in Week 1 and held him to 251 passing yards. Philly might have the answer for “Fitzmagic” and will look to put an end to his magic trick.
Cleveland Browns vs New Orleans Saints
Start: Josh Gordon, WR, CLE
Cleveland said he was on a snap count because of his hamstring and reporting late to training camp. Well that was a lie. Gordon played 69 out of the 89 offensive plays. The one down side of his Week 1 performance was being held to one catch. That could’ve been because of the weather, game script, or Tyrod Taylor. Gordon has WR1 upside due to his matchup against the Saints, who just got demolished by Ryan Fitzpatrick and the Buccaneers
Sit: Saints D/ST
What a twist of fate for the Saints defense. From being a team I said to start last week (I’m sorry about that) to a team I recommend you sit this week. The Browns put 21 points up on the Steelers and their defense is better than the Saints. It could be another long day for this New Orleans team that could be involved in another shootout.
Indianapolis Colts vs Washington Redskins
Start: Chris Thompson, RB, WAS
No reason to fear how he would be once he returned from his broken leg. Chris Thompson picked up right where he left off in 2017. He was a dual threat in both the passing and running game. He had 128 total yards on only 11 touches and he scored a touchdown, too. There is some significant value, especially in PPR leagues, even as Adrian Peterson’s backup.
Sit: Josh Doctson, WR, WAS
Chris Thompson (6), Jordan Reed (4), Paul Richardson (4), Jamison Crowder (3), Adrian Peterson (2), and Josh Doctson (1). Those are all the players and the catches they had in Week 1. If you remove AP from the list, the other four players are the primary receiving options for Alex Smith.
Los Angeles Chargers vs Buffalo Bills
Start: Chargers D/ST
If you need a reason to start the Chargers’ defense just take a look at what Baltimore did to them in Week 1. Pass rusher, Joey Bosa, missed the Chargers’ first game and it showed. The lack of pass rush allowed Chiefs QB, Patrick Mahomes, to sling the ball all over the field. Regardless if Bosa is able to play or not, this is such a favorable matchup for Los Angeles and makes this defense a must start.
Sit: Kelvin Benjamin, WR/Charles Clay,TE, BUF
I told you to not play them last week and hopefully you listened. Rookie QB, Josh Allen, will be getting the start this week and that is a slight improvement over Nathan Peterman. It doesn’t matter if Allen or Peterman start. Buffalo is faced with another tough matchup in Week 2 as they take on an underrated Chargers team.
Minnesota Vikings vs Green Bay Packers
Start: Vikings D/ST
Don’t be afraid of that baaaaaaaaaaaddddddddd man (Stephen A. Smith voice) Aaron Rodgers. This defense is good enough to play toe-to-toe against Green Bay or any team in the NFL. With the extent of Rodgers’ injury still undetermined, this Minnesota defense will push the attack. A comparison I can make about how the Vikings will go at Aaron Rodgers is like a pack of piranhas and a drop of blood. Once piranhas smell a drop of blood in water they attack nonstop. Expect Minnesota to get after Rodgers and force him to use his “bad” leg all four quarters.
Sit: Kyle Rudolph, TE, MIN
The saving grace for his day was his lone catch which resulted in a touchdown. Kirk Cousins and Rudolph look to be on different pages. Cousins doesn’t have the same chemistry like he has with Adam Thielen, Stefon Diggs, and Dalvin Cook. With only two targets the whole game against the 49ers and a matchup against Green Bay makes Rudolph a risky start this week.
Carolina Panthers vs Atlanta Falcons
Start: Devin Funchess, WR, CAR
With Greg Olsen out, this is when Funchess will excel. Devin Funchess will have an increased role just as he did in 2017 when Olsen was lost with a foot injury. He steps in as the WR1 role. Look back at what he did for eight weeks (Week 3-10) while Olsen was out. He caught 37 passes for 447 yards and scored five touchdowns in that time.
Sit: Calvin Ridley, WR, ATL
His first regular season game didn’t go exactly how he thought it would. He was held without a catch while playing 49 offensive snaps. Similar to Josh Doctson’s situation in Washington, it seems like Ridley is going to have to fight for targets. The Atlanta players who are ahead of him are Julio Jones, Mohamed Sanu, Devonta Freeman, Tevin Coleman, and Austin Hooper.
Houston Texans vs Tennessee Titans
Start: Houston D/ST
A great matchup for Houston in Week 2. Mariota is questionable to play this week with an eblow injury. If he is unable to go, that will leave Blaine Gabbert as the Titans’ QB. Tennessee TE, Delanie Walker, is out all season with a dislocated his ankle and ligament damage. Left tackle, Taylor Lewan, received a dirty hit and that resulted in a concussion. A backup tackle and Mariota’s favorite target lost makes Houston a great play this week.
Sit: Marcus Mariota, QB, TEN
A hand injury, an elbow injury, without Delanie Walker for the rest of the season, a backup tackle protecting his blindside, and he plays the Texans next. This is a recipe for disaster. He is already questionable going into the game and that makes him a risky start.
Arizona Cardinals vs Los Angeles Rams
Start: Jared Goff, QB, LAR
Picking up where he left off in 2017, Goff looked like a capable Fantasy starter. With a plethora of weapons at his disposal, Jared Goff will be a must start this week. Alex Smith put on a passing clinic against Arizona in Week 1 and you can expect the same from Goff.
Sit: Ricky Seal-Jones, TE, ARI
On Monday Night, Raiders TE, Jared Cook, lit up the Rams defense. If you watched the Arizona and Washington game on Sunday then you saw the disastrous opener by Cardinals QB, Sam Bradford. The Rams defense will attack Bradford all game long and force turnovers. That will limit how often Ricky Seal-Jones will be getting the ball.
Detroit Lions vs San Francisco 49ers
Start: Kenny Golladay, WR, DET
It was a surprise to many as Golladay outplayed fellow WR, Marvin Jones, on Monday Night. He finished the night with seven catches for 114 yards. Marvin Jones was used primarily as the deep ball receiver and the Jets keyed in on Golden Tate which allowed Golladay to get open repeatedly. Kenny could have another good game this week and is a valuable Flex option.
Sit: Kerryon Johnson, RB, DET
Some things just don’t change. He made my Week 1 Start_Sit and I’m suggesting you sit him again this week. Johnson only had eight touches the whole game and part of that was because of the pace of the game. Blount got most of the carries on first down and second down. Later in the game, Theo Riddick was the main back due to his superior pass catching skills. Kerryon is mixed into a crowded backfield and until he becomes the lead back for Detroit, he will continue to be a sit.
Oakland Raiders vs Denver Broncos
Start: Jared Cook, TE, OAK
With Greg Olsen and Delanie Walker out, you’re most likely looking to grab a new TE. Cook was stellar Monday and was the highest scoring TE in Week 1. Denver looked lost when they were trying to cover Seahawks’ TE, Will Dissly. Will scored a touchdown on three catches and ended the night with 105 yards. If Cook is able to get the same workload as Week 1 then he should have another successful week.
Sit: Phillip Lindsay, RB, DEN
Everyone needs to settle down on Phillip Lindsay. Don’t get me wrong he had a great Week 1 performance, but I need to point one thing out to you guys. He is not the starter!! Royce Freeman is the starting RB in Denver. Lindsay is the backup and mostly used as the third down back. His upside is limited due to his role. I’m gonna need another productive week for me to believe he is the real deal.
New England Patriots vs Jacksonville Jaguars
Start: Philip Dorsett, WR, NE
With only three more weeks of Fantasy Football relevance before Julian Edelman returns, Dorsett is a quiet Flex option in Week 2. Jacksonville will try to eliminate Rob Gronkowski, hold Chris Hogan to under five catches, and eye New England’s backfield. This leaves the door open for Dorsett to hopefully get a six catches and a TD.
Sit: Donte Moncrief, WR, JAC
Moncrief entered Week 1 as the second WR on Jacksonville’s depth chart. That wasn’t the case on Sunday. He was outplayed by Dede Westbrook who was the most productive receiver on Sunday. Donte Moncrief may be the new third WR on the depth chart now. With a lengthy injury filled history and only having one catch in Week 1, there is little Fantasy relevance here.
New York Giants vs Dallas Cowboys
Start: Sterling Shepard, WR, NYG
Second on the team in catches (5), yards (48), and targets (7) in Week 1. This shows Fantasy relevance with room for improvement. I’ll be surprised if Shepard ever gets more targets than his Pro Bowl teammate, Odell Beckham Jr. The Giants were able to be productive and move the ball against “Sacksonville.” If that is the case, they shouldn’t have a problem doing the same against Dallas. Shepard should be in the starting lineup of most leagues.
Sit: Dak Prescott, QB, DAL
The Carolina Panthers took away arguably the best RB in the NFL, Ezekiel Elliott, out of the game and forced Dak to throw. This was the downfall of Dallas on Sunday. Not having Dez Bryant and Jason Witten showed that Dak lacks chemistry with his receivers. He went to old reliable, Cole Beasley, because he has the most rapport with Beasley. With a lack of chemistry and the offense going through Zeke makes Dak a backup QB in all Fantasy leagues.
Seattle Seahawks vs Chicago Bears
Start: Bears D/ST
Chicago is a must start this week. They wrecked havoc on the Packers in the first half, but let off the gas in the second half. In Week 1, Denver and Von Miller couldn’t be stopped. Out of the six total sacks, Miller accounted for three of them. They also forced Russell Wilson to throw two interceptions. You can expect similar results this week with this new and improved Bears defense.
Sit: Chris Carson, RB, SEA
A tough matchup this week makes it hard for me to start Carson in Week 2. Chicago’s defense stuffed Jamaal Williams to average 3.1 yards per carry on his 15 attempts. Seattle will continue to rely on the passing game and Russell Wilson. There seems to be a competition in Seattle’s backfield, too. First round pick, Rashaad Penny, out touched Chris Carson 11-to-10. This is cause for concern moving forward, but we’re focused on Week 2.
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